Solutions to address primary health care cold chain and integration bottlenecks


Accidental interruption of the cold chain storage of health products can create problems such as spoilage, changes in the appearance, taste, or smell, growth of harmful bacteria, or lost potency. As part of PATH’s work in supply systems and equipment, this presentation provides insights into the biggest challenges in the cold chain management of temperature-sensitive health commodities in Primary Health Care (PHC) as well as key opportunities and potential risks with integrating non-vaccine products into existing vaccine cold chains. A review of literature and a stakeholder survey has revealed key recommendations, including improving the availability and quality of supply chain data to increase awareness and support policies for investing in strengthening the cold chain for essential medicines and diagnostics, improving guidelines for temperature management and monitoring of temperature-sensitive non-vaccine health products, and improving the availability and reliability of cold storage equipment for equitable distribution and service delivery.